What inspired you to write your memoir?
I was inspired to write this because of the events of the last 12 months in America. While it is a political book that looks at the pace of reform, I wrote this as a unique kind of hybrid. It reads like a novel. It is in fact a memoir. What I want this to be is a way that readers can look back over the past year and think about what they were doing or thinking during this time. That way it becomes a collective, remembered experience, with common benchmarks and dates.
On a personal level, it is a memoir for me in that 2014 marked a year of change that I have fought for personally. I think there are many people like me out there who feel the same way but perhaps aren’t writers.
About your Book:
Green is the month by month story of marijuana reform in America over 2014. Each chapter includes events that happened as well as a meta analysis of what these mean in the bigger picture of reform. There is a little history about what happened before this year in the first chapter to set the scene, but the vast majority of the book is coverage of what happened during the months of last year.
How did you decide how to publish your book and where is it published through:
I wanted to publish this book as an ebook for several reasons. The first is that it gives me unparalleled reach to a global audience. Marijuana reform is global, as much as the US is driving it right now.
The second is that I could publish it fast. We went through a fairly rigorous editing and review process, although of course this being an ebook, I also know that I can revise it if necessary to fix anything we might have missed during a six week process that I vaguely remember being fueled by alot of caffeine in several countries.
I published the book through Smashwords, primarily because they have the best platform I have found technically and when it comes to customer service. They are a distributor, however, so you can buy the book now through Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iTunes, etc. My website has a complete list of sellers (see www.greenthebook.de).
How do you see writing a Memoir as different from writing other genres of books?
A memoir must be able to connect the highly personalized events of the author’s life to some meaning with the audience. It is not fiction in that it really happened, but in every memoir there is a bit of fictionalized structuring of events – that is the nature of storytelling. You still have to structure a memoir with drama and meaning for your readers.
Where a common history becomes a memoir, which is what “Green” is intended to be, is a story that has great personal resonance for readers, even if the events in the book only serve to trigger their own memories of that moment in time.
This is a bit of an experiment for me actually – and pushing an envelope that I always wanted to explore. A great deal of my family died in the Holocaust. Those who made it out, including members of my immediate family of course, were instrumental in developing this idea in my head of a common story of events that works to trigger the identification of other people I might never have met or have anything else in common with – except this common experience.
In my head, this is almost a common memoir, written as much to document events that were of significance to me as my audience.
Marguerite Arnold is a veteran journalist, writer and filmmaker. She has a background in IT, finance, law, sustainability and state and national politics in the United States as well as a history as a new economy entrepreneur.
Born in New York City, she spent her childhood in London and returned to the United States as a teenager. She attended UNC Chapel Hill and spent her working life in the U.S. between Washington D.C. and New York City.
In 2013, she decided to return to live in Germany, where she is currently pursuing a joint-citizenship claim via paternal rights. She has also just been accepted to the M.B.A. program at the Cologne School of Business.
“Green” is her first published book.
She is the daughter of Gail E. Haley, noted children’s book author and illustrator, and Arnold Arnold, an author, columnist, designer, and collector.